A hotel with breathtaking Munich views
Originally conceived by King Ludwig I in the early 19th century, Hotel Bayerischer Hof is one of Munich's most iconic hotels and typically considered the grand dame in this city.
Located in Northwest Munich, Bayerischer Hof combines elements of old European luxury, such as the breathtaking foyer with its domed stain glass, with contemporary touches like the in-house movie theater.
Five restaurants and six bars cover eight floors along with 340 rooms and suites — the top-floor rooms have views of the Alps as well as all of Munich, private spa access, terraces or open fireplaces.
Late-night owls will particularly enjoy the Night Club Bar with live jazz, which doubles in size in the evening as walls are set back to expand the space, while foodies will relish desserts such as gingerbread with butter-caramel sauce in the noted Atelier restaurant.
Our Inspector’s Highlights
• Designed to evoke an artist’s private atelier, the restaurant Atelier turns out artful presentations by chef Jan Hartwig — he has a talent for food presentation and each dish looks worthy of its own Instagram post. And while looks are important, the creative dishes are excellent and focus on classic German fare with a unique Japanese twist.
The Munich hotel owes much of its popularity to its prime location, with ready access to Munich’s historic center where shopping and Bavarian architecture provide a picturesque backdrop.
• Andrée Putman designed the 13,000-square-foot Blue Spa, with its mosaic tile pool and glass roof (it opens when the weather is pleasant). Saunas, a steam bath, solarium and fitness studio, as well as a top-quality bar, make this place a must-visit.
What to Know
• Bayerischer Hof is a busy hotel, particularly at the height of the Christmas market season. It attracts both guests and people who want to see the grand dame, so a bit of patience will make a stay here more enjoyable.
• The luxury hotel is blissfully central to sightseeing and it is quite easy to walk to many attractions. For sites further afield, Munich has a public transportation system that is fast, clean and within a few blocks of the Bayerischer Hof.
• A popular elevated pool is long enough to do laps and sits under a roof that rolls open during warm weather for an indoor/outdoor feel, as do the wall of windows on the front-side of the pool. Bar and food service is also available poolside.
• As typical with a hotel this size, the rooms vary in size and amenities, but they also vary in décor schemes as well. Classic, cosmopolitan and colonial style rooms are the most numerous, but there are also ones designed by architect Graf Pilati and by British design house Laura Ashley.
• Accommodations by Pilati are modern and minimal, with light neutral tones of mostly grays, taupes and champagnes; the Laura Ashley rooms are filled with an abundance of floral patterns and chintz.
• All rooms have marble bathrooms, flat-screen TVs, iPod docking stations and bath products by Molton Brown, plus fresh fruit and water upon arrival.
• Palais Montgelas is a separate annex to the hotel built in 1811. The building houses several suites that feel extra special — they are filled with antiques and classical, opulent design and are very private (you can take an elevator straight up to your suite from the underground garage).
• Oktoberfest bring its fair share of visitors, but for those seeking culture without an alcoholic component, Kunsthalle Munich is the place to go. This contemporary museum, focused on artwork by Western artists, is located steps from Bayerischer Hof and is filled with paintings, sculpture, graphic arts and photography.
• Asam Church is the most famous of all the churches in Munich, widely known for its stunning Baroque architecture. However, the Church of our Lady (Frauenkirche) is very close to the hotel and, with its two bell towers and almost austere exterior facade, it serves as an iconic backdrop to many landscape portraits.
• Other major sites within walking distance of the centrally located hotel include Viktualienmarkt square in the city center, the opera house, the former royal palace of Bavarian monarchs, and picturesque Hofgarten park.